Judge: 51% Black District Discriminates Against Blacks

THE DELTA (Ben Caxton) — A federal judge has ruled that Mississippi state Senate district 22 violates the Voting Rights Act because it does not give African-American voters an equal opportunity to elect a candidate of their choice. The district stretches through parts of six Delta counties to the Jackson suburbs of Madison County and has been represented since 2004 by Republican Buck Clarke of Hollandale Clarke is running for state treasurer and not seeking re-election to the Senate this year; he is white while 51 percent of the voting age population is black. The lawsuit was filed last July by three blacks, one of whom lost the 2015 election to Clarke. Judge Carlton Reeves is giving legislators a chance to redraw District 22 and possibly other Senate districts. They could extend the qualifying deadline beyond March 1st for candidates in any districts that would be redrawn.


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